gather and grow

Homegrown, hand-spun living in the city

Spending time in a village like Laporiya was an opportunity for me to pause, to notice, to get closer. People’s faces — inquisitive, radiant, shy. The thick wool on the sheeps’ bodies, to become quality woolen blankets one day. The madly joyous whistling of the birds. The warmth of the body of a cow whose …

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Water is a huge issue in India, whether it’s the melting of the Himalayan glaciers or the devastating impact of many consecutive years of drought on farming communities. The most hotly debated solutions have tended to be the large-scale ones, like the building of large hydroelectric dams along many of India’s sacred rivers. Many of …

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It is late July in Laporiya village in Rajasthan — an arid region in India’s most arid state. When I arrived in this village of about 2,000 people, 85 km southwest of Jaipur, the monsoon rains had not yet come. Yet, you’d never guess it approaching the village: green grass, lush healthy trees, flourishing vegetable gardens …

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We’re traveling from monsoon-drenched mountains to the dry desert of Rajasthan today. The last three weeks in the hills around Dehra Dun — first volunteering at Navdanya, then quieting down my mind on a retreat — have been (mostly) a relief from Indian summer heat. The dramatic downpours have brought with them cool, comfortable breezes. …

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The greatest blessing of this summer of nomadic learning is, without doubt, the people we meet. In every place Dan and I have visited, we’ve encountered some truly inspiring people from all over the world with whom we’ve swapped stories and shared skills and information and meals and budding dreams of what is possible. We’ve …

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